I'm not advocating that people switch to Oracle at all, It's still much more expensive than Postgresql, and for most small and medium applications Postgresql is much easier to manage and maintain. I would just like to make sure people get their facts straight. I worked for a company that selected MS SQL Server because it was 'cheaper' than Oracle, when infact with the correct Oracle pricing, Oracle was cheaper, and had superior features. I would have prefered that they use Postgresql, which for the project in question would have been more appropriate and cost much less in hardware and software requirements, but they had to have 'Industry Standard'. Oracle ended up costing <$10k with licenses at $149 ea for 25 users, and the support contract wasn't that much of a bear - I can't remember exactly how much, I think it was around $1800/yr.
My facts were straight, and they come from firsthand experience. The point is, it is easy to get trapped into thinking to yourself, "great, I can get a dual CPU oracle server for ~$10K, that's not too bad...". But then later you figure out you really need table partitioning or RAC, and suddenly you have to jump directly to multiple 6 figures. The entry level Oracle pricing is mainly a marketing gimmick -- it is intended to get you hooked.
Also note that the per named user license scheme is subject to per CPU minimums that guarantee you'll never spend less than half the per CPU price. Oracle's licensing is so complex that there are businesses out there that subsist solely on helping companies figure it out to save money, and they take a cut of the savings. Oracle's own account reps had a hard time answering this question -- does a hyperthreaded Intel CPU count as 1 or 2 CPUs from a licensing standpoint? We were eventually told 1, but that the decision was "subject to change in the future".
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